Lawsuit dropped over Indiana abortion ultrasound mandate
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Planned Parenthood has decided to drop its federal lawsuit challenging an Indiana law that will require women to undergo an ultrasound at least 18 hours before having an abortion.
The law was passed by the Republican-dominated Legislature in 2016 but had been blocked since a federal judge’s ruling in 2017 . Although that ruling was upheld by a federal appeals court, the U.S. Supreme Court in July sent the case back to the appeals court for a fresh review that would take into account recent Supreme Court decisions.
Lawyers for Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky and the state said in a Wednesday court filing they agreed the injunction blocking the law should end on Jan. 1, citing “events” over the past three years and the addition of a new ultrasound machine at Planned Parenthood’s clinic in Fort Wayne.
The two sides asked U.S. District Court Judge Tanya Walton Pratt to then dismiss the lawsuit.
Republican state Attorney General Curtis Hill on Thursday described the agreement as a victory and said “Planned Parenthood has conceded defeat.”
Hill said the date for ending the injunction was set to give Planned Parenthood time to train staff members at its Fort Wayne clinic to operate ultrasound equipment.
“The concession makes clear that if anything threatened women’s ability to obtain abortions, it was Planned Parenthood’s own business decisions, not the challenged law — an argument that the State made all along,” the attorney general’s office said in a statement.
Spokeswomen for Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana, which represented Planned Parenthood in the lawsuit, didn’t immediately reply to requests for comment.
Planned Parenthood argued that the state law was unconstitutional...